The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
Every Day is Halloween Now
by Sheri White
Sam carved another pumpkin, then lit it up.
Just like yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that…
Another day in his life, in a world where Halloween never ended. He was Bill Murray in Groundhog Day, except nobody else inhabited this world with Sam.
It took him a while to accept what was happening.
The first Halloween night was completely normal. He took his twin boys trick-or-treating while his wife Amanda handed out candy. He greeted other parents walking the neighborhood with his kids, admired costumes, and enjoyed scary decorations in the crisp October air.
When he woke up the next morning, Amanda was not beside him. He got dressed and went downstairs to the kitchen to get coffee, but she wasn’t there either.
Figuring she was helping the boys get dressed, Sam headed back upstairs. But their bedroom was empty.
“Amanda?” Sam called. “Are you home?”
He waited a few seconds for an answer, then went to the garage. He started the car and turned on the radio to check the news. Static crackled through the speakers, no matter what station he chose.
He drove around town, looking for his family, checking places they could be. Maybe they went out to breakfast? He looked at iHop and Denny’s, but he didn’t see her car.
As he cruised around the town, Sam’s hands gripped the steering wheel until his knuckles turned white.
My god, where is everyone?
He pulled into the Target shopping center, encouraged by other cars parked throughout the lot. He jogged up to the Target, tapping one of the red concrete spheres for luck as he always did. The automatic doors didn’t open. He banged on the window.
“Hey! Hello? Is anybody in there?” He leaned against the window and cupped his hands around his eyes. Although the electricity was on, he didn’t see anybody walking around.
He slapped the window then ran to the other stores in the shopping center, screaming for someone to answer him.
Finally, Sam dropped to his knees on the sidewalk in front of Old Navy, slapping the ground and crying.
Now Sam spends his days carving pumpkins and eating chocolate, hoping that next time he wakes up he will have his life and family back.
Fiction © Copyright Sheri White
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from Author Sheri White:
Don’t Turn Out the Lights: A Tribute to Alvin Schwartz’s Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
Featuring stories from R.L. Stine and Madeleine Roux, this middle grade horror anthology, curated by New York Times bestselling author and master of macabre Jonathan Maberry, is a chilling tribute to Alvin Schwartz’s Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.
Flesh-hungry ogres? Brains full of spiders? Haunted houses you can’t escape? This collection of 35 terrifying stories from the Horror Writers Association has it all, including ghastly illustrations from Iris Compiet that will absolutely chill readers to the bone.
So turn off your lamps, click on your flashlights, and prepare—if you dare—to be utterly spooked!
The complete list of writers: Linda D. Addison, Courtney Alameda, Jonathan Auxier, Gary A. Braunbeck, Z Brewer, Aric Cushing, John Dixon, Tananarive Due, Jamie Ford, Kami Garcia, Christopher Golden, Tonya Hurley, Catherine Jordan, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Alethea Kontis, N.R. Lambert, Laurent Linn, Amy Lukavics, Barry Lyga, D.J. MacHale, Josh Malerman, James A. Moore, Michael Northrop, Micol Ostow, Joanna Parypinksi, Brendan Reichs, Madeleine Roux, R.L. Stine, Margaret Stohl, Gaby Triana, Luis Alberto Urrea, Rosario Urrea, Kim Ventrella, Sheri White, T.J. Wooldridge, Brenna Yovanoff